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January 2017

You kinda get the feeling he doesn't want to be President

Donald Trump is being sworn in as president today. Some people are happy. Some people are not. Some people are just confused. I think Trump himself has realized that Presidents don't just appear on TV and lie about stuff, like oh... there never having been a concert in front of the Lincoln Memorial:

Later, he laid a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery and attended his Lincoln Memorial inaugural concert, saying that one had never been held there before even though many similar events have taken place in front of the iconic seated statue of the 16th president.

In fact, you have to govern! And that means figuring out who is going to do what. I can't imagine the amount of work that goes into a Presidential Transition, and it seems neither can Mr. Trump:

Since his election on Nov. 8, Mr. Trump has had little interest in the minutiae of his transition, saying it was “bad karma” to get too involved, according to a person who spoke with him at the time. At one point, he wanted to halt the planning altogether, out of superstition, the person said.

His lack of understanding of the task at hand, and his clear lack of intellectual curiosity are the things that really worry me about a Trump presidency. I feel like he'll be governing from his seat of his pants and that's no good.

I will say, however, that while I disagree with the VAST majority of Trump's goals... I do like a few of his promises (which he won't do). I'm all for spending money to:

  • Modernize our nuclear arsenal - To make it safer, and with an eye towards reduction (though I think Trumps wants more nukes). I watched Command and Control the other day on PBS and it scared the pants off me. At least I'll rest easy with Rick Perry at the helm of the Department of Energy. Oh, wait, I won't. Sigh.
  • Infrastructure - We need to spend a lot of money to fix/replace bridges, highways, and roads across America (in both rural and urban places). And that'll even get people to work!

That's about all I agree with, though I wouldn't mind a better version of the ACA... I'm not sure the Republicans will deliver on that.


2016 in Books

I read 75 books in 2016 (I thought I had read 76 but Goodreads counted a book that I hadn't read in 2016, that sassy website).

I've already blogged about some of my favorites, but here's the whole list (this post is inspired by Justin Blanton's. He and I read very different kinds of books):

*****

The Sparrow by Mary Russel Doria

A Closed and Common Orbit (Wayfarers, #2) by Becky   Chambers

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet (Wayfarers, #1) by Becky   Chambers

The Dark Forest (Remembrance of Earth’s Past, #2) by Liu Cixin

Woman with a Blue Pencil: A Novel by Gordon McAlpine

Slade House by David Mitchell

Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard by Lawrence M. Schoen

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2) by V.E. Schwab

Anatomy of Evil (Barker & Llewelyn, #7) by Will Thomas

The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson

Stiletto (The Checquy Files, #2) by Daniel O'Malley

Zero K: A Novel by Don DeLillo

Necessity (Thessaly, #3) by Jo Walton

The Yard (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad, #1) by Alex Grecian

The Devil's Workshop (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad, #3) by Alex Grecian

The Harvest Man (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad, #4) by Alex Grecian

Lost and Gone Forever (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad, #5) by Alex Grecian

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

Lady Cop Makes Trouble (Kopp Sisters, #2) by Amy  Stewart

The Privilege of the Sword (Riverside, #2) by Ellen Kushner

Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky

****

The Trials (The Red Trilogy Book 2) by Linda Nagata

Night Life (Michael Cassidy, #1) by David C.  Taylor

Staked (The Iron Druid Chronicles, #8) by Kevin Hearne

Gentleman Jole and the Red Queen by Lois McMaster Bujold

The Strangler Vine (Avery & Blake, #1) by M.J. Carter

The Steel Remains  (A Land Fit for Heroes #1) by Richard K. Morgan

Acceptance (Southern Reach, #3) by Jeff VanderMeer

Updraft (Bone Universe, #1) by Fran Wilde

The Fifth Season (The Broken Earth, #1) by N.K. Jemisin

Linesman (Linesman, #1) by S.K. Dunstall

Alliance by S.K. Dunstall

The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley

Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear

Signal to Noise by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Singer from Memphis (The Athenian Mysteries #6) by Gary Corby

Wylding Hall by Elizabeth Hand

The House of Shattered Wings (Dominion of the Fallen, #1) by Aliette de Bodard

The Gospel of Loki by Joanne M. Harris

Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt

Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters

New Pompeii by Daniel Godfrey

The Black Country (Scotland Yard's Murder Squad, #2) by Alex Grecian

Four Roads Cross (Craft Sequence, #5) by Max Gladstone

Dark Run by Mike Brooks

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

The Regional Office Is Under Attack! by Manuel  Gonzales

Throne of Jade (Temeraire, #2) by Naomi Novik

The Big Sheep by Robert Kroese

The Mirror Thief by Martin Seay

The Zig Zag Girl (Stephens & Mephisto Mystery, #1) by Elly Griffiths

The Cold Between (Central Corps, #1) by Elizabeth Bonesteel

A Night Without Stars by Peter F. Hamilton

Look to Windward (Culture, #7) by Iain M. Banks

Blind Justice (Sir John Fielding, #1) by Bruce Alexander

Our Lady of the Ice by Cassandra Rose Clarke

Daggerspell (Deverry, #1) by Katharine Kerr

In the Land of Giants: A Journey Through the Dark Ages by Max    Adams

Swordspoint (Riverside, #1) by Ellen Kushner

The Fall of the Kings by Ellen Kushner

Hell Bay (Barker & Llewelyn, #8) by Will Thomas

***

Murder at the 42nd Street Library (Raymond Ambler #1) by Con Lehane

Expo 58 by Jonathan Coe

The Aeronaut's Windlass (The Cinder Spires, #1) by Jim Butcher

Dr. DOA (Secret Histories, #10) by Simon R. Green

Hour of Judgment (Jurisdiction, #4) by Susan R. Matthews

Smoke by Dan Vyleta

Wolf Star (Tour of the Merrimack, #2) by R.M. Meluch

Dead Man Walking (Ishmael Jones, #2) by Simon R. Green

All Those Vanished Engines by Paul Park

**

Manhattans & Murder (Murder, She Wrote, #2) by Jessica Fletcher

Raising Caine (Tales of the Terran Republic, #3) by Charles E. Gannon

Surrender, New York by Caleb Carr

The Myriad by R.M. Meluch


I read lots of books from a variety of publishers, but here's the top three:

Tor Books: 8

Del Rey: 4

G.P. Putnam's Sons:4

I got to wonder about the author gender breakdown of the books I read in 2016, and it is pretty good:

Gender2016books

I didn't make an effort to read any particular kind of author's work, and I don't plan to. I read whatever strikes my fancy, but I think these numbers are telling me that I'm hearing about more books written by women, which Im all for!


2016: A Year In Walking

2016 Steps

Thanks to my handy Fitbit I know that I walked over 10,000 steps each day in 2016.

My lowest step day was 11/18/16 (10,001 steps) and my highest was 10/18/16 (23,476 steps in Ireland!).

In total I walked:

Steps: 4,310,553
Miles: 2151.39

Not too shabby!

Oh, and you can click on the graph above to see it bigger, if you're interested in such things.


Bb2016This year has sucked, but it hasn't been all bad.

I'm writing a post per day for the rest of 2016 talking about some of my favorite things this year. Find the rest of the posts in this series here.